HISTORY OF CLEAR CREEK BAPTIST CHURCH
Clear Creek Baptist Church is located four miles Southwest of Dyer in the Currie Community in Gibson County.
GENERAL BAPTIST ASSOCIATION -- 1911
(Now Gibson County Baptist Association)
The following elders organized Clear Creek Baptist Church in October 1851.:
J. T.Shipman, M. Flowers, and Jessie Jolliff. Besides the Presbytery there were three other membersIsaiah James, Sr., Samual James, and Mary James.
From that time until 1887, the following were pastors: Mike flowers for II years, David Haste for 3 years, T. J. Sanders for 2 years, and B. F. Farmer for 4 years. From 1887 to 1897, no ministers are shown.
The church was reorganized in 1897, following a great revival led by Bro. J. T. Early who pastored the church until February 1902. Other pastors serving until 1910 were W. M. Hill, S. E. Reed, 0. F. Huchoba, G. H. Stigler. B. F. Early preached after 1910.
The first deacons were Isaac James, Sr., and A. J. Fletcher who joined the church by letter soon after the church was organized.
The following is a portion of the minutes of a business meeting held in 1905:
We, the Baptist Church worshipping at Clear Creek met in Conference the third Lord's day in November 1905. A motion was made and carried to raise our pastor's salary to $150.00 a year. A committee of six was appointed to raise the pastor's salary by subscription. Sister Della James, D. A. Fonville, Tom Davidson, Dea Barnett, Will Smith, and 0. T. Love were on the committee. Bro. M. J. Keaton and wife Collen called for letters of dismissing. Letters were granted.
Conference adjourned by prayer.
S.E. Reed, Moderator
O.T. Love, Clerk
*In those days it was a common thing to withdraw fellowship from members for unchristian conduct or difference in belief about the Bible.
Since 1911, the following have been pastors: A. L. Bates, 1913, Bro. Guthrie, 1914; A. L. Abney, 1915, Bro. Bucket, 1916; J. N. Joyner, 1916 - 19; R. J. Williams, 1919 - 22; Bro. Nevel, 1921; H. L. Carter, 1923; J. S. Shelton, 1925; L. W. Ferrell, 1927; Hubert West, 1928; Roy Crider, 1929, Bro. Carlton, 1933; Bro. Cutlipp, 1935; Mars Prince, 1936; L. M. Mayer, 1943; D. F. Wiggington, 1944; Carl Duck, 1946; E. L. Franks, 1950; W. W. Shanklin, 1951; Russel Rogers, 1953; James Glisson, 1955; Vestel Bennett, 1956; Bro. Burns, 1957; Jimmy Sorrells, 1958; Jimmy Rogers, 1961; Gerald Smith, 1963; Dennis Pulley, 1966; Tommy Baugh, 1968; James Castleman, 1970; Jimmy McCall, 1974; Don Hudgins, 1977; Terry Hodges, 1978; Charles Starnes, 1980. Pat Murdock is pastor at the present time.
The following ministers have been ordained, D Smothers, December 21 1930; Othel Morris, 1945; Gayle Suraft, June 29, 1969. Offis Smothers was licensed.
Deacons ordained since 1911 are E. D Davidson, H. N. Jones, 0. T. Love, H. F. Halliburton, E. N. Warman, R. E. Judy, R. W. Sewell, Raymond Halliburton, Waldron Davidson, Charles Suratt, Grant James, E. B. Fletcher and Raymond Hall.
Those who have served as Church Clerks that are on record are: 0. T. Love, H. L Duck, Raymond Halliburton, E. B. Fletcher, Grant James, Jerry Maxwell, Mrs. Raymond Erwin, Mrs. Gerald Smith, Mrs. James Freeman, Jane Forsythe Jannie Davidson serves as the Clerk at the present time.
Those who have served as W. M. U. Directors are Mrs. E. B. Fletcher, Mrs. E. D. Davidson, Mrs. Raymond Halliburton, Mrs. C. H. Moody, Mrs. Wade McCaslin, and Mrs. B. T. James.
Records do not show the First Sunday school Superintendent. Mr. 0. T. Fletcher was superintendent for many years prior to 1942. He was a very influential man and led many people to Christ.
Serving as Superintendents since 1942 are the following: R. E. Judy, Raymond Halliburton, Raymond Hall, Waldron Davidson, and Gary Mercer. Charles Ramsey is Sunday School Director at the present time.
The first musical instrument used in Clear Creek was a pedal organ. Clara Davidson was church organist for several years. The church has its third piano since that time. It was given to the church by Dr. and Mrs. G. M. Cannon in memory of Mrs. Cannon's father and mother, the late Mr. and Mrs. H. F. Halliburton.
Among those who have served, as church pianists are Dorothy Fletcher, Estelle Halliburton, Esther Hall, Mary Evelyn Fletcher, Sandra Hall, Judy Maxwell, Leta Sadler and Carol Hall. At the present time Marcella Freeman, Debbie Ramsey, and Esther Hall serve as pianists.
Church song leaders have been E. B. Fletcher, Raymond Hall, and C. H. Mann.
The church has had three buildings since the time of organization. The first building was a log one; the second, a frame building. The present building was built in 1948. All buildings have been on the same spot. However, the date of the first two is not known.
Isaac James, Sr. (788 - 1864), gave the land for the church site. He and his wife were charter members. They are buried in the church cemetery. The James farm was across the road from the land given for the church. Some of the James family has been members of Clear Creek since organization. Mr. and Mrs. Thomas James and Mrs. Virgie James are the only current members at this time.
Clear Creek experienced a great revival in August 1904, while S. E. Reed was pastor. Twenty-one people were baptized. Mrs. Ollie (Halliburton) Bottoms, now a resident of Dyersburg, is the only person living who was baptized at that time. At ninety-seven years of age she still likes to talk about being baptized in the Forked Deer River by Reed.
Another great revival was held in 1913 when eighteen were baptized while A. L. Bates was pastor. One of those baptized was Hollis Fletcher who has been a member of Clear Creek since that time.
The Sunday school was organized while Bro. Mars Prince was pastor (1936 - 1938). New classes were organized and curtains were installed across the one room building so classes could not see each other.
The church grew prior to Prince also. Rev. Roy Crider was pastor from 1929-1931. The baptizings were in the Forked Deer river. Large crowds of people always attended these services. The great crowd of people would sing "Shall We Gather At the River" as the pastor and those that were to be babtized were going down into the river. As they came out, the crowd would sing "When we All get to Heaven". One of those people Mrs. Vergie James, now in her early eighties, is still very active in church work.
Carl Duck was Clear Creek's first full time pastor. He was only seventeen years of age at the time he was called. A student of Union University and five hundred miles away from home, he became a part of every family of the church. Rev. Duck led the church in building a new brick building in 1948. This was a great responsibility for a young preacher of nineteen.
This building was debt free when the first service was held in it. Mr. 0. T. Fletcher gave the brick at a cost of $2,200.00. This was a great contribution to the total cost of $11,500.00.
Two more additions have been made to the building since that time. The first was in 1975; the second, in 1979.
Bro. Duck and Bonnie Brown whom he met while in college were the first couple to be married in the new building constructed in 1948. Rev. W. B. Okley performed the ceremony.
Many of Clear Creek's pastors have been student pastors-some of Union University's best whom we have enjoyed very much.
Clear Creek has had some of the best Sunday school teachers a small church could have. Raymond Hall has taught for some forty years. Mrs. Lydia Davidson who died in 1983 was a member of the church for 83 years. Her husband, the late E. D. Davidson was a member for 73 years. Four generations of this family are attending Clear Creek at the present time.
Family names of those attending church at Clear Creek this October 6, 1985 are Mrs. Enos Churchwell, The Waldron Davidsons, The Ronnie Davidsons, The Gene Foraythes, Marcella Freeman, The Raymond Halls, The Raymond Halliburtons, The Mike Horners, The Allen Hunts, The Thomas James's, Mrs. Vergie James, The Paul Lindseys, Mrs. Peggie Ledgers, The C. H. Manns, The John (Dick) Mercers, The Rex Mercers, Mrs. Martha Mercer, The Pat Murdocks, The Charles Ramseys, The Bobby Selphs, Mary Ann Selph, The Stephen Speers, The Hendrons, The Yulouda Ball, and The Mike Garretts.
Prepared by Raymond Halliburton October 1985
submitted by Charles W. McCollum